Caitlin and Andy were married last fall at Bethel Rock in Leonard. I love working with this venue because they provide a unique area for the cake - a beautiful stone topped sideboard that is in front of a pair of old barn doors. It creates the perfect back drop for the cake cutting photos!
Caitlin and Andy selected a naked-cake which complimented the rustic doors. The top three tiers of their cake were Cookies & Cream and the bottom tier was Red Velvet all with Cream Cheese Buttercream.
Their cake table was decorated with garland and flowers that reflected the décor on the tables throughout the venue and large letters spelling out their last name. These little touches not only tie the cake table in with the rest of the venue, but they can help soften the lines of the horizontal table and vertical doors. Simple and beautiful!
Congrats to Caitlin and Andy on their upcoming anniversary!
We have another Open House coming up on October 1. This time, we will be at the beautiful Magnolia Grace Ranch in Leonard from 12-4pm.
Magnolia Grace Ranch is a modern farm style venue on 15 acres and features two outdoor ceremony spaces in addition to their reception venue which can be converted to ceremony space during inclement weather.
The inside of the venue is full of light thanks to floor to ceiling windows surrounding the fireplace. It really is a perfect canvas for any color palette.
Additionally, there are separate areas for the couple and their attendants to get ready for the big day.
You can RSVP to the Fall Vendor Fair on Magnolia Grace Ranch's Event Page on Facebook. Plan to come out to tour the venue, meet some of the venue's favorite vendors, and sample some cake!
Wedding cake toppers are a great way to add a personal touch to your wedding or groom's cake. They can be customized to reflect your personality, interests, and style. There are many different types of wedding cake toppers available, from traditional figurines to modern or whimsical designs.
Here are some ideas for traditional wedding cake toppers:
If you want a romantic and elegant look, you can choose to have flowers as your wedding cake topper Flowers are a classic symbol of love and beauty, and they can add a touch of color and texture to your cake. Flower cake toppers can help tie the cake into the rest of your venue décor because your can ask your florist to provide extra blooms for the cake.
Your initials or last name
If you want a simple and modern look, you can choose a wedding cake topper with your name initials. Initials are a great way to personalize your cake without being too flashy or overwhelming. You can choose from different fonts, sizes, and materials, such as wood, acrylic, or metal.
Traditional couple figurine
The epitome of tradition, the couple figurine, which is usually made from a plastic or porcelain, is a classic topper. With the plastic versions, you can typically find a variety of skin and hair tones that most closely match you and your fiancé. Porcelain varieties can be painted or left white.
Or, you can add a bit of your personality to the cake toppers such as these:
Quotes or Sayings
If you want a meaningful and inspiring look, you can choose a wedding cake topper with quotes or sayings. Quotes are a great way to express your feelings and emotions in a poetic and memorable way. You could also select something a little more humorous or topical such as a quote from a TV show. You can choose from different styles, fonts, and colors, such as calligraphy, cursive, or bold.
If you have pets that are part of your family, you can choose a wedding cake topper the showcases your furry, feathered, or scaly friends. You can also include a custom-made figurine of your pets in wedding attire!
Hobbies or Careers
If you and your partner share a hobby or interest, or if you love your job, you can choose a wedding cake topper that represents it. There are lots of options including music notes, books, cameras, or sports equipment. You can also have a custom-made figurine of yourselves doing your favorite activity!
The sky is the limit when it comes to cake toppers, but my favorite has to be:
Anything that helps tells your story
Maybe you accidentally ghosted your fiancé when you first met, have a favorite sports team, met at college, or saw Jurassic Park on your first date. Your wedding or groom's cake is the perfect spot to share your story with your wedding guests.
If you are ready to start designing your wedding or groom's cake, complete our tasting form and we will be happy to help!
Mariana and Joey had a beautiful wedding at Bethel Rock in Leonard last year. The venue was filled with white flowers which a family member had graciously gifted and arranged for the couple. Roses, and magnolias, and lilies, oh my! When I got home from the delivery I could still smell them all!
After taking a look at the centerpieces, it was time to trim the flowers left for me to arrange on the cake. The textured buttercream was a perfect background for these pretty blooms, and Joey and Mariana decided on a single cascade of flowers that swept across the middle tier of the cake.
On the inside, the top and bottom tiers were Italian Cream cake and the middle tier was Red Velvet cake.
I just love when the cake table is decorated. It helps tie the space in with the rest of the reception décor and gives a cohesive look to the entire venue. Mariana and Joey displayed some subtle art, magnolias and greenery, their cake knife and server and an initial for their last name too. And you can't go wrong with the addition of a coordinating fabric runner and cake stand!
Are you ready to start designing your wedding cake? Just complete the contact form, and I will be happy to help!
River Road Chateau, one of my favorite venues, is having an open house on Sunday, August 27, 2023 from 2:00-4:00pm.
An Open House is a great way to tour a venue and meet the vendors they love to work with. There may also be giveaways, raffles, or freebies too. I'll be there with cake samples and will have a special discount in the raffle.
River Road Chateau is located on 76 acres in Anna, and features an outdoor ceremony space, a 4000 square foot reception venue, and Belle Manor, a guest house that can also be rented for your day. There are also gardens planned by a Texas Master Gardner and lots of beautiful photo locations.
As if all that wasn't enough, the people at River Road Chateau are what really make the venue stand out. Lori and her team are amazing and truly care about all of their couples!
If you, or someone you know, is planning a wedding, this Open House is the perfect opportunity to get a few check marks on that wedding to-do list.
Did you know August 8 is National Whataburger Day? Last year, Sarah and Jonathan were married the day before this tasty holiday, and their groom's cake was a perfect compliment to both occasions.
Sarah and Jonathan are missionaries, and she wanted surprise him with a personalized groom's cake. She said every time they come back to the states, Jonathan has to make his first stop Whataburger, and as a big Sweet & Spicy Bacon Burger fan, I could completely relate!
I sketched out a cake that looked like the building so we could get an idea of the size. Sarah wanted the more A-frame style instead of the newer boxy looking stores, so that meant a little carving was in order. The height of the roofline was going to vary from about 3.5" at the edge to 6" at the peak with approximately 50 servings of cake.
Once the lemon cake was baked and filled with vanilla buttercream, it was time to get to work carving the cake into the correct shape. I created a template from my sketch dimensions to help get the right silhouette.
Then it was time to crumb coat the cake and add fondant panels to create the walls and striped roof.
Details really make a cake like this come alive, so I added texture to the roof and drive through window covers, plants around the doors, parking blocks, a street sign congratulating the newlyweds, and their wedding date as the opening hours on the door.
Of course there was also a wedding cake! Sarah wanted a naked cake, but instead of all white, she chose to have chocolate for the middle tier. This created visual interest as well as offering an additional flavor to their guests. The top and bottom tiers of the wedding cake were white chocolate with almond buttercream, and the middle was chocolate fudge with chocolate buttercream.
Congratulations to Sarah and Jonathan on their anniversary!
When it comes to planning a wedding, some things are easier to account for than others. For instance, most venues only have one dance floor, so you probably only need one DJ. If you are serving a meal, you would plan on one entrée for every guest that says they are coming to share your special day.
Desserts however are one of those things that are not so cut and dry. Fortunately for your wedding budget, you do not usually need a slice of cake for every guest though. So how much cake or dessert do you really need? Well, the answer depends on a few factors and involves a little math.
Right now, the wedding planners I work with tell me that about 80% of the guests on the invite list are coming to the wedding. Once at the wedding, only 80-90% of guests will have dessert if they are responsible for picking it up on their own at the cake table. Not everyone will have dessert because they will be too having too much fun on the dance floor, or they may lose time talking with Uncle Joe who they haven’t seen in years, or they may be on a special diet.
The homeschooling mamma in me feels like we need an example here. So let’s say that you invite 200 people to the wedding. You can estimate that 160 will actually come to your event, and you will only need about 128 – 144 servings of dessert for those wedding guests. 200 invited guests x 0.8 = 160 guests at the wedding. Then 160 x 0.8 = 128 for the low end of the range and 160 x 0.9 = 144 for the high end of the range of the guests at the wedding that will eat dessert.
If you are having both a wedding and a groom’s cake, there is a little more calculation to do. I recommend a 60/40% split when there is a groom’s cake. Let’s continue using the same example. I like to pick the mid-point of the 128-144 range to give a starting point which is 136. 136 times 60% is 82(ish) servings of wedding cake and 40% is 54(ish) servings of groom’s cake. Now that you have a general idea of how many servings you need, we can look at cake sizes that are close to those numbers.
If you are planning on other desserts like cookies or cupcakes, you can of course reduce the amount of cake, but keep in mind that when you have a dessert buffet, people will always take more than one dessert. FOMO is real when tasty treats are involved. You can count on guests taking about 3 mini desserts when you offer items like chocolate chip cookies, macarons, or lemon tarts, or 1 slice of cake plus 1 mini dessert.
These are general guidelines and there are other factors to consider. For example, if you are having an afternoon reception and are not serving a meal or alcohol, more people will eat dessert as it is the only offering at your party. If you are planning on saving the top tier of the wedding cake for your first anniversary, you will want to account for those servings in the guest portion of the cake too.
Of course, there is an exception to the “not everyone will have dessert” rule. If you are having a formal diner which is served by waiters who are also serving the dessert to your guests, then you will want a slice of cake for everyone in attendance.
Part of your baker’s job is to help guide you to the right size cake or number of desserts, so lean on their expertise to find the sweet spot where every guest that wants something sweet can partake without leaving you a ton of leftovers at the end of the night.
Are you ready to begin planning your wedding cake or dessert table? Complete the Contact Form to get started, and Melisa will be happy to help guide you through your options.
You don’t have to look far to find a tradition at a wedding. Whether it’s “something old / something new”, wearing your ring on your left ring finger, lighting a unity candle, the toasts (or roasts), or feeding each other a piece of cake, traditions can be found in every part of the ceremony and reception. When Jace first contacted me, she wanted to make sure I was familiar with a specific tradition – cake pulls.
According to neworleans.com, “Wedding cake pulls are a local tradition carried over from the Victorian era as a way to wish good luck onto close friends without extending the bridal party.” This is a great option to include everyone when you only want a small number of bridesmaids.
But what are cake pulls? Cake pulls are charms with ribbon tied to them which are placed between the tiers of the cake. The charms are iced over so only the ribbon shows. At the time of cake cutting, the bridesmaids and other invited ladies surround the cake, each selecting a ribbon. They then pull out their charm, revealing what was selected. Each charm is different and comes with a card describing what the charm symbolizes.
Jace’s twelve pulls included a ring (next to get married), airplane (destined to travel), and a four-leaf clover (bring luck to everyone). Music notes, an umbrella, a tree, and a sun were also part of the set.
In contrast to her vintage tradition, Jace’s cake was a modern design. The four tier cake was iced as double barrels creating the appearance of two extremely tall tiers. Usually, my cake tiers are 5 ½ to 6 inches tall; however, Jace’s “two” tiers were just over twelve inches each. The buttercream icing detail reflected her wedding colors. She selected white chocolate wedding cake with almond buttercream.
Zachary is an avid Dallas Stars fan, and I created a design to reflect his favorite team. The couple selected the team’s alternate jersey colors as a base. I added the logo to the bottom tier, and a jersey with their last name and wedding year as the number. To complete the look I added some fondant hockey pucks and a hockey stick that appeared to go through the cake. Zachary selected lemon cake with raspberry buttercream.
I love delivering custom groom’s cakes as the guys are usually wandering around the venue waiting to take pictures when I arrive. They get the first look – even before the bride! There were audible “ohh’s” and “ahh’s” from the groom and his friends when I set this one up!
One of my most popular cookie flavors is snickerdoodle. In fact, they are second, only to chocolate chip.
So what is a snickerdoodle? I'm glad you asked! A snickerdoodle is a cinnamon cookie rolled in cinnamon and sugar before baking. I add a little brown sugar to my recipe as well for a richer flavor. Some form of the cookie has been around since the late 1800's, and the name is debated amongst food historians. Some say the name comes from the German phrase "schnecke knodel" (there's an umlaut missing over that o...my keyboard isn't happy with special characters today), which means snail dumpling. Others say the moniker comes from the Dutch "snekrad", also referring to a small snail-ish shape. Escargot? Well that's the French snail delicacy and has nothing to with cookies. Back to desserts!
Snickerdoodles have been on my cookie menu since the beginning, and they are the perfect flavor for the cinnamon lover.
A couple years ago, I had a bride ask for a snickerdoodle cake. I did not have that flavor on my standard menu, but I am happy to offer custom flavors. So I turned on the mixer and started to experiment. After a few trials to get the flavors right, I created a cinnamon cake with a cinnamon and brown sugar swirl, and I paired it with a cinnamon and brown sugar buttercream. The bride loved the sample and decided that would be her wedding cake flavor.
Recently I had another bride ask for a snickerdoodle cake, and I dug the recipe out to recreate the flavor for her. My Flavor Development Team... ok, my kids... love the cookie, and they gobbled up the cake scraps which are the bit of cake that is cut off the top so it is flat. They immediately insisted that I add it to my permanent menu. I couldn't argue with them one bit. Well, not about this.
The swirls and darker buttercream cannot be seen from the outside of the cake, and I recommend cream cheese buttercream as the outer icing for this new flavor. Yum!
If you would like to sample this flavor (or any other) for your wedding, please fill out our Contact form, and we can get your design consultation scheduled.
According to National Day Calendar, today is National Banana Bread Day! I’ve been making banana bread since I was in high school. My mother had a set of cookbooks that were like encyclopedia volumes, and they were filled with some fabulous recipes, the banana bread recipe was my favorite. Those cookbooks sadly disappeared in a move when she downsized, and I wish I had them today. I tried unsuccessfully to replicate the recipe from memory and by trying and adjusting other recipes, but none of them lived up to banana bread I remembered from my youth.
While on our honeymoon almost 17 years ago, my husband and I found a cookbook in a winery gift shop that just called to us. The book was titled Bride and Groom First and Forever Cookbook. As newlyweds how could we pass that up? It was meant to be because not only was there a banana bread recipe in this book, but it was almost identical in taste and texture to the one all other recipes were being measured against. I made a couple modifications, and we had a winner!
First, I toast my pecans. Could you skip this step? Absolutely! And sometimes I don’t bother. However, the flavor develops a little more depth when you take the time to toast them. This can be done in an oven at 350°F for a few minutes or in a pan on the stove over medium heat. Stir them a few times, and you’ll know they are done when you can smell the nuts and they darken a little. You could also use walnuts if you prefer, but I’m from Texas so…pecans. I mash my bananas at this time too.
Now I get all my ingredients measured. We mix all the dry ingredients together, then mix sugar, oil, eggs, and vanilla in a stand mixer or with a hand mixer in a separate bowl.
Next, we alternate adding the dry ingredients with the milk and beating until just incorporated. Don’t overmix – the gluten in the wheat flour will overdevelop resulting in an overly chewy bread (not in a good way). I never have buttermilk on hand, and we only need half a cup, so I make sour milk as shown in the recipe. You could replace the milk and vinegar with buttermilk if you prefer or have some in the fridge. We’re really looking for the chemical reaction between the acid in the milk and the baking soda, and the taste is not affected regardless of which you use.
Finally, we mix in the mashed bananas and pecans. Again, just until they are incorporated – don’t overmix. Pour into two prepared pans and bake at 350°F for about an hour. The banana bread is done when a toothpick inserted in the bread comes out mostly clean.
My daughter and I enjoy our banana bread without anything added to it, but my husband and son prefer to slather their slices with butter. It also makes a decadent French toast.
You can make muffins with this recipe, but you need to crank up the oven to get the right rise. The tops of the muffins bake in concentric circles. The outside circle sets, then the next circle rises and sets, then a little closer to the center rises and sets…this is what gives muffins their dome or top. Bake at 400°F for 17-19 minutes for regular size muffins or 12-15 minutes for minis.
Yield - two 9x3 inch loaves
Prep time - 10 minutes
Bake time - 1 hour
1 ½ Cups Pecans, toasted and chopped
2 Cups very ripe bananas (about 5 – 6 small bananas), mashed
2 ¼ Cups All-Purpose Flour
1 teaspoon Kosher Salt
¾ teaspoon Ground Cinnamon
2 ¼ Cups Sugar
3 Eggs, lightly beaten
1 ½ teaspoon Vanilla
½ Cup Milk
½ teaspoon White Vinegar
1 ½ teaspoons Baking Soda
Preheat oven to 350°F. Prepare two loaf pans with baking spray.
In a medium bowl, stir together the flour, salt, and cinnamon.
In the bowl of a stand mixer or in a bowl with a hand mixer, beat the oil and sugar on low until combined. Add eggs and vanilla and beat until incorporated, about 1 minute.
Stir vinegar into milk to make sour milk – it will start to thicken after a minute or two.
Stir the baking soda into the sour milk. Add one third of the dry ingredients to the sugar and egg mixture followed by half of the milk and mix until incorporated. Repeat and scrape down the sides of the bowl. Mix in the final dry ingredients and scrape the bowl again.
Add the mashed banana and nuts and mix until just incorporated.
Pour the batter into the prepared pans and bake until golden brown and a toothpick inserted into the center of the loaves comes out clean, about 1 hour.
Remove from oven and cool on wire rack for 15 minutes before serving.
Hi! I'm Melisa.
Yep, only one 's' in my name!